FacebookTwitter

7 Must Read Python Books

7 Must Read Python Books

I started learning Python just two years ago. Coming from a C++ and Java background, it was easy to pick up the basic language features, but I wanted to learn more.

What I did was order all the Python books that had good ratings on Amazon and I read them cover to cover. You can see the full list of my reviews under Book Reviews.

For this post I have identified 7 Python books which were truly excellent. I divided the books in three categories: Python The Language, Python Web Programming, and Python Data Science.

Python – The Language

1) Fluent Python – Luciano Ramalho

Fluent Python

Fluent Python

Luciano Ramalho is probably the most enthusiastic Pythonista author. He has a casual writing style which stays interesting and his enthusiasm is contagious. The book is about 600 pages and covers details of the CPython implementation in depth. He provides a lot of high level explanations as well. There’s tons of extra links and information for learning any language feature in Python.

2) Python Cookbook – David Beazley, Brian Jones

Python Cookbook

Python Cookbook

If you have been around the Python community awhile, you know the name David Beazley. His book is all about recipes and the idiomatic way to write Python. In the Zen of Python it says: “There should be one– and preferably only one –obvious way to do it.” Beazley shows you the way and the recipes range from basic language features up to advanced meta-programming, co-routines, and generators. The book specifically covers Python 3, so do not be worried about its 2013 publication date.

3) Effective Python – Brett Slatkin

Effective Python

Effective Python

Slatkin worked at Google for a number of years where he perfected his knowledge of the Python programming language. The book is written in the Scott Myers style which means that advice is broken into specific tips to make your Python programs better. The book has beautiful coloring and pages, making it look like the Python IDLE. Despite being less than 300 pages, this book packs tons of information into its contents and the writing was excellent.

Python – Web Programming

4) Flask Web Development – Miguel Grinberg

Flask Web Development

Flask Web Development

Miguel Grinberg wrote the first, and the best tutorial on Flask. Grinberg also wrote an amazing online Flask tutorial and keeps a regularly updated blog on Flask. His book elegantly guides you through setting up a website and how to deploy it. I used his tutorial to build my first website in Flask and found his book incredibly valuable.

5) Two Scoops Of Django – Daniel Greenfeld, Audrey Greenfeld

Two Scoops Of Django

Two Scoops Of Django

Daniel and Audrey are a couple who specializes in Django web programming. Their book is a complete list of best practices covering Django 1.8. An ice cream store analogy is used throughout the book to describe concepts. This surprisingly quirky concept made the book a joy to read and I gained a much better understanding of web programming by reading this book.

Python – Data Science

6) Python Machine Learning – Sebastian Raschka

Python Machine Learning

Sebastian Raschka created an amazing machine learning tutorial which combines theory with practice. The book explains machine learning from a theoretical perspective and has tons of coded examples to show how you would actually use the machine learning technique. It can be read by a beginner or advanced programmer.

7) Data Visualization with Python and Javascript – Kyran Dale

Data Visualization

Data Visualization

Released in July 2016, Kyran Dale provides an great tutorial for data visualization. The book uses the example of Nobel Prize winners to build a beautiful website using the Flask framework. A large part of the book explains how to get and clean the data, store it in the backend, and use D3.js to make colorful visuals for the front end. Do not be scared of Javascript in the title, the author provides clear explanations about the Python and Javascript parts. If you’ve ever wanted to visualize your data, this is the book for you.

Final Thoughts

How accurate is my list of must read Python books? Is there another book I should have included? Leave me a comment below!

6 Comments

  1. riot

    November 4, 2016

    Post a Reply

    If you’re into data analysis, check out “Data Analysis With Python” (another great one from O’reilly, oh and (disclaimer:) translated to german by two friends of mine ;D ) – very good book not only covering all the important analysis basics but also coming with really neat examples – a bit cookbook like.

  2. Ben

    November 4, 2016

    Post a Reply

    Great list, I must check out ‘Data Visualization with Python and Javascript’. Another book not to miss out on is the O’Reilly Book ‘High Performance Python’ by Micha Gorelick and Ian Ozsvald. It’s great for learning how to speed up your code by understanding a lot more about what’s going on under the hood.

    • rampage101

      November 4, 2016

      Post a Reply

      That is another good one. I was actually thinking about including it on the list, and a few other people mentioned it as well. Thanks for the feedback.

  3. Abhishek

    November 6, 2016

    Post a Reply

    Learning Python and Programming Python by Mark Lutz are another good books to start..

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *